Get Your RFP Database Ready for the New Year

On the first business day of the new year, I made an update to our RFP response database within seconds that would have consumed hours of my time in the past.

Luckily, I didn’t have to undertake the arduous task of updating multiple documents, sales proposals and presentation slides. By using Qvidian’s RFP and proposal automation software, I changed the copyright year from 2019 to 2020 across all automated sales, marketing and customer support documents. Now, the entire team can create RFP response documents and questionnaires with the correct year (and I saved hours of my time). Easy!

Ongoing RFP Response Database Management Essentials

At the start of a new year, quarter or fiscal period, there are a few things to update and add to your RFP database management checklist. Although these tasks may take more time than it took to update the copyright year, the resulting proposal-ready RFP content is, as they say, priceless.

1. Review and update default value merge codes.

In the Qvidian content library, default value merge code fields are used to globally apply information (like the copyright year, number of years in business, number of customers and financial information) to content records throughout the RFP database. You define the value of the merge code once and then can immediately apply it to all the appropriate content records. Now, updating content can take minutes instead of hours or days.

2. Double-check content with expired review dates.

By assigning expiration dates to content records that require routine review and updates, Qvidian will automatically notify you of expiring content. This allows you to coordinate with subject matter experts by prioritizing the information that’s outdated.

3. Audit content not recently updated.

For content without expiration dates, Qvidian automatically tracks the date when you last updated information. This allows you to apply the advanced filters in Qvidian’s search to find content that you haven’t updated recently.

4. Identify frequently used content.

For content used frequently, you can search by the number of times used within a selected timeframe. This list allows you to see the content that perhaps warrants a special review to confirm that it’s accurate and on message.

5. Evaluate infrequently used content.

For content that you never or infrequently use, you can evaluate and move to a less visible archived folder. This allows you to accelerate your RFP response process by removing search results that you don’t need.

6. Assess user activity.

Finally, you can use Qvidian’s Event Auditing tools to see who is actively using content – and who is not. Both of which may have valuable feedback on how to improve your RFP content database. From the active users, you can seek feedback on how to improve content and services, and from the inactive users, you can identify opportunities for training.

It’s important that you perform an audit of your RFP response database content periodically — either at the start of the year, business period or when your schedule permits. Although the above list of tasks for managing your RFP content is not conclusive, your content management process should be tailored to your specific business requirements.

If you need help creating a content management strategy unique to your business that keeps your RFP database accurate and up to date, contact us. We’ve helped hundreds of teams get started on a more efficient RFP response trajectory, and we’d be honored to help you.

Shared with you by: Jeanne Schulze